Unemployment falls below 5 percent

20/07/2017 15:00
According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), unemployment declined to 4.9 percent of the labour force in June. For the first since the summer of 2011, less than 5 percent of all people in the labour market are looking and immediately available for work.

Between April and June, unemployment declined by an average of 6 thousand per month and stood at 446 thousand in June. The number of people in paid employment grew by an average of 11 thousand per month. At the end of June, the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) paid 372 thousand unemployment (WW) benefits.

y
326
334
342
361
367
374
391
398
408
412
423
434
444
443
440
432
434
434
438
437
433
429
431
433
430
425
413
411
414
409
425
427
442
458
474
473
486
482
487
502
501
502
518
517
530
539
554
572
589
601
619
625
632
648
666
670
675
680
677
687
691
699
692
684
672
656
648
637
630
632
635
643
645
633
626
625
617
611
603
604
609
616
596
588
574
581
574
572
560
550
541
521
510
502
499
482
480
473
463
456
456
446

UWV: number of benefits continues to drop

In June, just as in previous months, the number of current unemployment benefits declined compared to the preceding month. UWV reported a total number of 372 benefits this month, i.e. a decrease of 13 thousand (-3.5 percent). There was a sharper decrease among young benefit claimants under the age of 25 (-5.4 percent) than in the age group 55 years and over (-2.7 percent). Furthermore, the decline in number of unemployment benefits compared to May was sharper among men (-4.8 percent) than among women (-2.2 percent).

The number of benefits dropped substantially compared to June 2016 (-15.1 percent). Construction companies saw a more than average decline relative to one year previously (-42.5 percent).

UWV: sharp decrease in new benefits during first half of 2017

In the first six months of this year, UWV provided 208 thousand new unemployment benefits: a decline of 20.7 percent compared to the first half of 2016. In nearly all sectors, the number of new benefits decreased year-on-year. The drop was above average in the sector construction (-48.7 percent) and retail chains (-47.8 percent). The banking sector shows a different trend: the number of new benefits was up by 18.8 percent in the first six months of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016.

Youth unemployment lower, unemployment among elderly still higher than in 2011

Nearly six years ago was the last time when the unemployment rate fell below 5 percent. Unemployment went up after that until the beginning of 2014 and subsequently declined again. It declined more rapidly among the youngest age group than among people aged 45 and over.

Youth unemployment amounted to 8.9 percent in June, which was also lower than six years ago (9.5 percent). The unemployment rate in the age group 45 years and up, however, was still higher than in 2011 (4.7 against 4.1 percent). Furthermore, youth unemployment has declined more rapidly over the past three months than unemployment in older age categories. The decline in the latter group in fact levelled out at the beginning of 2017.

y
4,7
4,9
4,9
5,1
5,2
5,4
5,4
5,5
5,5
5,5
5,7
5,7
5,7
5,9
5,8
6
6,1
6,2
6,4
6,6
6,8
6,9
7
7,1
7,3
7,5
7,5
7,6
7,6
7,6
7,7
7,8
7,9
7,8
7,7
7,6
7,4
7,3
7,2
7,1
7,1
7,1
7,2
7,2
7,1
7
7
6,9
6,9
6,8
6,8
6,8
6,9
6,7
6,6
6,5
6,5
6,4
6,4
6,3
6,1
6
5,8
5,7
5,6
5,6
5,4
5,3
5,3
5,1
5,1
5,1
4,9

More people in work

There are 12.9 million people in the Netherlands in the age category 15-74 years. In June, 66.6 percent of them were in paid employment. This is equivalent to 8.6 million people (4.6 million men and 4 million women). Between April and June, the number of people in paid employment has grown by an average of 11 thousand per month. Altogether 4.3 million people aged 15-74 are not in paid employment; 446 thousand of them are unemployed.

In Q1 2017, nearly 3.9 million people were not looking or not immediately available for work. Out of this group, 3.2 million people indicated that they were not willing or able to work due to education or training, care for others, sickness or old age. The remaining more than 600 thousand people were either not available or not looking for a job.

y
8755
8773
8774
8764
8758
8746
8741
8732
8732
8719
8710
8719
8717
8703
8684
8702
8716
8704
8721
8715
8712
8718
8728
8730
8704
8702
8667
8663
8655
8677
8674
8693
8740
8768
8794
8810
8809
8804
8802
8819
8829
8829
8834
8864
8881
8888
8886
8897
8893
8894
8912
8906
8903
8911
8912
8919
8934
8951
8937
8901
8896
8894
8853
8855
8864
8846
8854
8858
8857
8893
8901
8901
8924
8911
8902
8909
8912
8910
8902
8910
8908
8916
8895
8898
8892
8905
8912
8946
8935
8941
8955
8953
8958
8965
8965
8969
8991
8977
8993
8995
9002
9009

More unemployed are finding work

The main reason for the decline in unemployment is that more unemployed find work than workers lose their job. In June, there were 118 thousand people in work who were still unemployed three months previously. In the same period, 81 thousand people who were still in paid employment three months previously had become unemployed. The decline in unemployment was slightly tempered as the number of jobseekers who could not find work (167 thousand) exceeded the number of unemployed who gave up looking for work (148 thousand).

Labour market flows

Related items